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home : features : reel watchers May 24, 2016

3/30/2014 6:01:00 AM
Noah: Flawed movie, character
F.W. Brock
Kingman resident

Noah is a flawed character - a working class warrior who stumbles through "The Creator's" directions and manages to save humans but not humanity. The film is not without controversy; theological purists will have to suspend their disbelief to endure the film's glaring Biblical inaccuracies and a stressful bout of family violence.

Strife fills the Ark as a metaphor of the Garden of Eden unfolds. Noah struggles with clarity from The Creator and scenes aboard the Ark border on the psychotic rather than humble spiritual turmoil. The best scenes come when Noah is confronted by his wife and, later, his daughter-in-law over The Creator's Will. Noah becomes a personification of God's destruction.

Those who are not wedded to the classic tale and who can suspend their disbelief for 2-1/2 hours may find the creative liberties and sci-fi interpretation to be refreshing. Anthony Hopkins brings a light-hearted wit to the role of Methuselah, the Bible's oldest living man. Along the family's journey, they encounter raiders, cannibalism, and great volcanic rock creatures - the Watchers. The most believable scenes in the movie are after the flood waters have receded when the family copes to find their place in the new world. However, it is difficult to grasp inspiration or sentimentality in the story amidst shoddy CGI, outrageously stylish costuming, predictable bad guys, and an apocalyptic industrial society.

Despite an impressive veteran cast, the main character is the roughshod, yet impressive, Ark. The vessel is of an epic scale that has rarely been portrayed on film. Fastened together with pitch, leaves, and roughly patched timbers, the sense of hopelessness and inadequacy of Noah's preparation are revealed in the vessel's design. It's 2 Miners for a brave new interpretation that fizzles under predictable action-movie conventions.

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